In a message to the industry, the Travel Industry Council of Ontario (TICO) says that it recognizes the difficulty that many registrants have faced resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic; observing that the prolonged industry downturn has led to great financial strain and uncertainty, forcing some registrants to make the difficult decision to voluntarily terminate or allow their registration to expire.
Now TICO is pleased to share that effective Dec. 6, 2021, it has updated the Registrant Reinstatement Policy in order to encourage registrants considering reinstatement to do so without additional fees.
This policy will be available up to March 31, 2023, for any former TICO registrant that voluntarily terminated their registration or allowed their registration to expire from April 1, 2020, onwards.
Part IV of the Travel Industry Act (Act) provides the overall requirements for a new registration and annual renewal, including when the registrar may refuse, revoke, or suspend a registration. Further, Ontario Regulation 26/05 (Regulation), Part II, provides the requirements for a new application, including forms and fees.
Recognizing the delivery of travel services to consumers has evolved with the advancement of new business models, and the impact of the global pandemic on the travel industry, TICO wishes to ensure that the marketplace remains vibrant and that purchasing options for consumers remains robust.
With this goal, TICO wishes to clarify its policy with respect to a former registrant that wishes to reinstate their registration after voluntarily terminating their registration with TICO or allowing their registration to expire.
There are numerous reasons that a former registrant may wish to reinstate their registration. TICO will approve a reinstatement of any former registrant under the following conditions:
- At the date of the voluntary termination / expiration of a registrant, there must not have been any unresolved compliance issues, claims against the Compensation Fund and/or other outstanding financial compliance requirements
- At the date of the voluntary termination/expiration of a registrant, all fees* owing to TICO, up to the date of the termination / expiration, under the Act or Regulation must have been paid in full
- The person applying for reinstatement must not have been charged with an offence and a CPIC check will be required
- If the former registrant has been employed, or contracted, by a TICO registrant, he/she must not have been terminated for reasons associated with the lack of honesty and integrity detrimental to the travelling public, in the view of the registrar
- All other requirements for registration and renewal are met
If all the above conditions have been achieved, the former registrant may be reinstated and the new application fee will be waived. A security deposit will not be required if the former registrant had filed two consecutive annual financial statements or verification statements with TICO, and the Registrar has no concerns with compliance to the legislation. All reasonable efforts will be undertaken to re-issue the same registration number as previously used.
TICO says that it believes this policy will be of benefit to certain individuals and/or former registrants who have chosen to voluntarily terminate their TICO registration or allow their registration to expire or leave the industry altogether during the pandemic but have the desire to re-engage and sell travel services as an Ontario registrant.